CC 300 DX - Love Songs of the Western Tradition: Sacred and Profane
3 Credits
MWF 11:30am-12:20 pm - Professor Steiner

Cross-listed with MUS 390 AX
This course examines conceptions of sacred and profane love in the Western tradition by comparing musical settings of the Song of Songs. Even though reading this erotic and perplexing poem about lovers anticipating their consummation was forbidden in the medieval period, the poetry emerged in songs that mixed sacred and profane love in ways that startle us today. Seventeenth-century cantata settings of the Song of Songs drew upon the lush, seductive style of the Italian opera to create in their listeners a holy desire. Today similar themes of nature, anticipation and secrecy pervade both sacred and profane love songs. These musical settings give us a lens for viewing the history of love from the medieval period through today. Musical works will include those by Peter Abelard, Guillaume Dufay, Giovanni Palestrina, Claudio Monteverdi, Francesco Cavalli, Dietrich Buxtehude, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Richard Wagner, David Lang, Matt Redman and Mumford and Sons.